Healthcare and Social Care Integration: How do we make it work?

Over the coming years, hospitals, health workers, social care staff and others will progressively be working side-by-side, sharing information and taking a more co-ordinated approach to the method services are provided. Older people and individuals with lasting health conditions will be the very first to take advantage of these changes.

What this implies in practice
At the moment, if somebody have to arrange care from a district registered nurse, for example, but likewise requires aid to wash or prepare a dish, they might have two or 3 various professionals coming to their door and asking comparable questions prior to help can be put in place.

With these modifications, the process will end up being much smoother. Personnel such as district nurses, community matrons, social workers and other experts will be in a position to communicate with each other on a more routine basis and share information to support individuals better. Eventually clients might have a single ‘care co-ordinator’ who is their primary contact point.

From the start, the teams have been working closely with regional clients and their families in making the brand-new ways health and social care services will interact– because individuals who utilize services are in the very best position to say what works well for them. This also includes self-management. For more information on this, please see the Related Pages section.

Benefits for Patients

By working together, staff from all sides can more easily identify which patients are most at risk– for example, of going into hospital– and then put together a combined package of care, support and lifestyle advice designed to keep them healthier and independent for longer. If somebody winds up in hospital, personnel from the hospital can work with those in the community to assist them leave with the right support in place.

Closer joint working will also:

  • help to get rid of out of date processes that are duplicated throughout both health and social care.
  • reduce waste and bureaucracy by working as a more reliable, combined unit.
  • enable people in various parts of the city to have equal access to care and support.
  • reduce delays in care and offer people the right support at an earlier stage so they are less most likely to experience worsening of their condition.
  • reduce the need to enter into hospital and allow individuals to better manage their condition and live as independently as possible.
  • improve the sense that services are ‘fragmented’ by reducing the number of professionals that need to be involved in someone’s care, and making sure those who do are working more carefully together.

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